As a visual designer, knowledge of color theory is one of the most important tools you can have in your toolbox. Generally, people decide within 90 seconds whether or not they like your products, and that decision is based 90% on the colors used.

Color theory is the art and science behind color; it contains the rules and guidelines used to communicate to users through color. It takes into account things like color schemes, moods, and cultural influences on the meaning of color. …


As defined above, typography refers to the art and technique of styling and arranging type. Regardless of your design expertise, everyone in the world who is able to see and read has some experience with the impact of typography. We can intuitively understand when a certain font just works — and when it absolutely does not. But as designers, our understanding of typography has to go a bit beyond that, starting with some basic definitions.

Typeface

Typeface refers to the overall design, style, and shape of all letters, numbers, and punctuation. It is what we generally refer to when talking about…


Times are tough right now, and looking for a design job when you’re fairly new to the role is even tougher. There is so much we can be doing to improve our odds of getting hired, like doing some freelance work, personal projects, networking virtually, updating our portfolios, etc.

When working with a career coach, I heard a good breakdown of where those of us looking for a job should be spending our time: 15% applying, 15% working on our skills, 10% editing portfolio/resume, and 60% networking and making new contacts.

Today, I’m going to focus on the 15% of…


In my UX/UI design program, we started off by learning about all the different subsets of design that we could eventually work in. Our instructors walked up through a list of design roles and responsibilities separated by whether they fell under the UX umbrella, the UI umbrella, or a solid combination of both.

Most of the different roles and their distinct responsibilities made sense to me. They seemed split into roles surrounding strategy, research, creation of the design itself, etc. These roles and their processes/practices were clear enough.

But once we started talking about interaction design (or IxD), the distinction…


Same.

Even before the pandemic, I was an avid online shopper. I considered it a hobby to window-shop online and I would regularly spend hours browsing through everything new and on sale on all my favorite stores’ websites. I wouldn’t buy anything 90% of the time, but it was just fun to look around.

Since the pandemic hit, that hobby became more of a necessity since I no longer had the option to do my shopping in person. …


illustration of a man doing research
illustration of a man doing research
Image credit: TechGig

After looking through probably about 100 different job descriptions for UX/UI/Product/Experience designer roles, it’s clear that they all require essentially the same grouping of skills — conducting user research, building out wireframes, communicating design decisions clearly, prototyping, etc. Pretty standard requirements of a designer.

There’s no doubt that these are the major qualifications a hiring manager would be looking for in a designer. But in working as both a designer and product manager, I found that there are several skills that go beyond what is expected. They make a designer stand out from the pack. …


As designers, our portfolio sites are what we are primarily judged on by our peers and by potential employers. Since graduating from my UX/UI design program, I feel like I have been constantly revamping my portfolio. I’ll see another designer’s site and be inspired by their animation, illustration, case study, branding, etc., and want to tweak my own portfolio. I have never felt “done” with my portfolio site — I’m starting to think it will be a constant work in progress.

I’ve probably looked at over 100 different design portfolio sites for inspiration over the past couple of months. While…


When I was a little kid, I remember my first experiences with brand recognition being for companies like Coca-Cola. I could recall their logo and signature script lettering easily and could identify a Coke can from a mile away. It was the only soda brand we had in my house growing up, and I could probably draw the can design from memory by the time I was 6.

It wasn’t until I was older and studied design more seriously that I started to get a bigger picture of what branding really entails. It encapsulates a lifestyle, a feeling, and makes…


Ever since high school, I’ve been intrigued by grocery stores. I remember one of the first articles I ever read around consumer behavior and psychology was centered around the layout of grocery stores. I was floored by learning how precise and purposeful the entire layout was: stacking kid-friendly items lower on the shelves to reach their eye level, keeping most entrances on the right because starting there makes people spend more, etc. Everything was in its place for a reason, and that reason was to make more money.

Now I’m older and a little more jaded about capitalism and consumerism…


image of a clipboard with a bulleted list
image of a clipboard with a bulleted list
Credit: HOTLITTLEPOTATO

I am a Virgo rising and I identify with it fully. Those who know a bit about astrology probably know that this means I live for lists. As a child, I had journals full of different lists — places I want to travel, my favorite celebrities, an ordered list of my favorite colors, etc. I was a really fun kid.

I think people are generally drawn to lists for a variety of reasons. Structure and organization are universally appealing & they are quick to skim and understand. They make reading and comprehension easy. Whenever I look for design-related articles, there…

Devin Ross

Reader, writer, designer, singer, animal lover.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store